In Arabic, Islam’s Messiah is called al-Mahdi, or simply Mahdi. Islamic literature has much to say about the role of their Mahdi when he arrives. The timing of his arrival is the major question. It is said that he will arrive when the world is in a state of utter chaos, but he will end the chaos and usher in peace and justice. It is written by Muslim scholars and Hadith interpreters that he will “bring in true and uncorrupted guidance to all mankind, creating a social order and a world free from oppression in which Islam will be the norm for all nations.”
Islamic literature also reveals that their long awaited Mahdi will initiate a peace treaty with the Jews. The treaty will have the duration of seven years which will coincide with the time that Mahdi is said to reign.
“The Prophet (Mohammed) said…he (the Mahdi) will divide the property, and will govern the people…and establish Islam on earth. He will remain seven years, and then die…”
Perhaps not coincidently there is a Biblical passage from the prophecy of Daniel that also speaks of a seven year peace treaty.
“Then he shall confirm a covenant (treaty) with many for one week (seven years)…” Daniel 9:27
The above passage from Daniel, however, is describing the advent and activities of the Anti-Christ. This peace treaty, which will be signed to be broken, will signal the beginning point of the seven year tribulation period which Jesus describes as follows:
“…For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.” Matthew 24:22
Muslim Hadith interpreters state that the Islamic Mahdi is even described in the Bible.
“And I saw and behold a white horse. He that sat on him…went forth conquering and to conquer.” Revelation 6:2
The above description of the rider on the white horse is what is commonly called the first horseman of the apocalypse. There are four such horsemen that appear at the beginning of the tribulation period. Let’s look at the above verse in total:
“And I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.” Revelation 6:2
The rider is seen as having a bow without arrows and a crown was given to him. This is the man who God allows to draft the seven year peace treaty with Israel. He doesn’t need arrows of war at this time because he will conquer with deceit. He is again determined to be the Anti-Christ.
Remember it was said earlier by Islamic scholars that their Mahdi would reign for seven years and then die.
The Bible does in fact confirm that the Anti-Christ will be destroyed at the end of the seven year tribulation period. The Apostle John describes this event as follows:
“…Then the beast (Anti-Christ) was captured, and with him the false prophet…These two were cast alive into the lake of fire…” Revelation 19:20
So the Islamic version of their Mahdi is that he will appear on earth at a time of chaos and confusion to bring justice and order. He will initiate a peace treaty between Israel and Arab nations. He will rule during the duration of the seven year “peace” treaty, and then die leaving the world in a better state than he found it.
The Biblical version of these events is that during a time of chaos and confusion God will allow the appointment of a very charismatic leader. The Bible describes this man as having “a mouth speaking pompous words.” This man will offer to solve the age old conflict in the Middle East between Israel and their Arab neighbors. He will devise a peace treaty of seven years duration. This treaty will be broken in the midst of it, i.e. after three and a half years, at which time this charismatic leader will claim to be God. At this point the world will experience the worst catastrophic events ever recorded in human history and over half of the population of the earth will be destroyed. This great tribulation will continue until the end of the seven year period when another white horse will appear with a divine rider.
“Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war…Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” Revelation 19:11-16
Notice the similarities between the Islamic version and the Biblical version. Both state that there will be a time of chaos. Both state that there will arrive on the scene one riding on a white horse who will bring an end to the chaos. Both state that there will be a seven year period to end the chaos and usher in righteousness and justice. Both state that the “peace maker” will die after the seven year period.
There is a major difference, however, between Islam’s version and the Biblical version of these events. Islam’s version states that their Mahdi will arrive to mark the beginning of the seven year tribulation period while the Biblical version states that the real Peace Maker of the world will arrive to mark the end the seven year tribulation period.
Again, note the words of Christ Himself:
“Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.” Matthew 24:11